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Low Light - Again

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 11:11
Markethunter View Drop Down
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Sorry if this is getting old... I see the other post on the same subject but I'm looking in a different price range.

Need everyone's opinion on a pair of Binoculars for Low Light hunting in the $1500 range or less. I built some shooting houses this past summer and moved them slightly back off our food plots. Seeing more deer for sure but now I'm further away and I'm having trouble judging rack.

Didn't really matter until I had 2 monsters walk out with about 5 minutes of light left last night and I couldn't see the racks other than they were tall and outside the ears. I could ALMOST see them, but just barely not there with my current Binos. I have a pair of 8.5 x 43 (I think) Minox. German made for sure. These are older. Been told Leica made them.

The quick math says I've got about a 5mm exit pupil with the current Binos.

Looking for something better.

Don't care about size or weight. I can carry them in my pack and I can prop them up on the window of the shooting house.

I live in the sticks so the chances of me going somewhere and being able to look through different high quality binoculars is slim so I appreciate everyone's help in advance.

I have a Meopta Meostar 8x56 scope and I like it, and was considering their 8x56 Binos, but have seen a couple comparisons through internet research and while I like the price...they don't appear to be the best in this price range?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 11:17
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Leica makes Leica binoculars.  Most older Minox models were made in China and Japan.
 
Shoot for a bigger exit pupil.
 
These are really bright.  I mean it.  they are also huge:
 
 
These are good values in a bright roof prism:
 
 
Over your price range, but also crazy bright:
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 11:19
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There are a couple pair of 10x56 Zeiss Victory on the sample list.  They would be great in low light.  I have a pair of 10x45 Victory and they work very well in low light.   One is $1,499, the other $1,599. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 11:26
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Originally posted by Markethunter Markethunter wrote:

Need everyone's opinion on a pair of Binoculars for Low Light hunting in the $1500 range or less. 

Didn't really matter until I had 2 monsters walk out with about 5 minutes of light left last night and I couldn't see the racks other than they were tall and outside the ears. I could ALMOST see them, but just barely not there with my current Binos. I have a pair of 8.5 x 43 (I think) Minox. German made for sure. These are older. Been told Leica made them.

The quick math says I've got about a 5mm exit pupil with the current Binos.

Don't care about size or weight. I can carry them in my pack and I can prop them up on the window of the shooting house.

I have a Meopta Meostar 8x56 scope and I like it, and was considering their 8x56 Binos, but have seen a couple comparisons through internet research and while I like the price...they don't appear to be the best in this price range?

A 7mm exit pupil will be much more helpful, either in 7x50 or 8x56.

http://swfa.com/Docter-8x56-Nobilem-Binocular-P8928.aspx

http://swfa.com/Minox-BL-8x56-BR-Binocular-P9030.aspx

http://swfa.com/Meopta-8x56-Meostar-Binocular-P7972.aspx

Give them a test drive and decide for yourself. Wink

Stan






Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 11:44
Markethunter View Drop Down
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Thanks for the replies. Keep'em coming please.

If I have to buy a bigger pack to tote my binos they'll fit right in line with the rifle I'm totin. Weight went out the window a long time ago.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 14:45
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Originally posted by Markethunter Markethunter wrote:

Thanks for the replies. Keep'em coming please.

If I have to buy a bigger pack to tote my binos they'll fit right in line with the rifle I'm totin. Weight went out the window a long time ago.


Another thought.......since it's obviously very late in the day when this happens, have you taken the time to make sure you can see your reticle in case you can verify a shooter?  If it's that late looking through good binos there's a chance you can't see it good enough through your scope.  Just a thought, nothing more.  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 15:18
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Yes.

I had a 50mm Conquest 1" scope and could see much better in low light through my Minox binoculars. So I bought a 30mm tube Meostar 3-12x56 thinking I'll be able to see as good as the binoculars.

Now I have the opposite problem.

I can see and pick out the deer in my scope fine. I'm thinking (hopefully) I'll be able to judge them better through some upgraded Binoculars.

And understand... I realize I can't shoot in the dark. There are limitations to all of this. I'm just looking for any kind of edge I can get. I'm only shooting ones that go on the wall. And they are getting more expensive every time I buy a new piece of equipment or plant another seed.

Helluva problem to have I guess...    
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 16:35
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Gotcha Markethunter.  Good luck with your search and have some fun with it.  When you peg one of those big bucks post us up some pics!  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 17:05
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3-12x56 Meostar is an outstanding low light scope.

For low light binoculars, make sure you get something with a large objective lens: 56mm would be good.

Something along the lines fo 8x56 or 10x56 would be my recommendation and if you like Meopta, one of the Meostars is a good choice.

For around $1000-$1100, it is a choice between Meostar and Steiner Nighthunter 8x56 models.

If you want a 10x56, Steiner Night Hunter is just about it in the $1100 range.

If you decide to go up and price, there are a few better options, but most of the improvement is somewhat incremental.  Still, something like Swarovski SLC 8x56 or Zeiss FL 8x56 would be a little better.  

Ultimately, if you decide to go the "price is no object" route, just get the Zeiss FL 8x56 or 10x56 and get it over with.

For rangefindeing binoculars, both Zeiss and Leica, I think offer 56mm objective versions.

If you reconsider and want something a touch lighter 50mm version are quite good as well and with the fancy binos, I am quite partial to Leica, they seem fit my hands exceptionally well.

ILya
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 18:05
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IMHO, a 7x42 Meopta would give you great low light performance in an easier to use package.
Notice that almost any of the better quality 7x42's that come up in the Sample List get sold pretty quickly, that is a clue about that size form factor.
Look around the web, last week I saw the Zeiss 7x42 available at a really good price, when you find it, call SWFA and see if they can price match.
Anyway, for less than a $1,000.00 you can get the Meoptas or if size is not a problem the Docter's in 8x56.
Art
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 20:31
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Is there a decent write up anywhere on the Steiner Nighthunter XP?

I think I can find a pair of Meopta 8x56 to look through. There is a dealer over in Alabama I can go by around Christmas.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/03/2012 at 20:59
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Reason I ask that is because it appears the the Night hunter has a superior FOV to the Meopta both 8x56
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/04/2012 at 06:26
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If you are trying to count rack points in near dark at a distance I would opt for a 10x56 over the 8x56. I think you will gain more from the 10x over what you lose being under a 7 exit pupil. You need some magnification to see detail in poor light. Just my thoughts on it. Plus it is likely that your eyes can't use the total 7 exit pupil were they can always use the 10x.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/04/2012 at 08:02
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Though I am a big fan of lower power/bigger objective models for regular use (a 7x50 is one of my favorites) I think for this application I would agree that a 10x56 would be the best option. The 10x should pull in more detail in low light (assuming you can hold it steady enough to take advantage of the higher magnfication) plus the larger objective should make the overall image brighter than a 10x42 model.
 
The 10x56 FL mentioned above would be perfect for your application.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/04/2012 at 08:12
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I love low light hunting discussions because it matters a lot to me personally.

Being on a highly managed property where a mistake is a big deal means I better be damned sure of how old a buck is and the antler spread, number of points, length, etc. before I pull the trigger..

I don't want to be "THAT GUY" that brings in a big 10 point that is only 3.5 years old!

I got the Meopta Meostar 3-12x56 #4 illuminated in yesterday evening.

Did some testing at low light between it and a Accupoint 2.5-10x56 last night.

Yes, the Meopta has better glass and they nailed the illumination, reminds me of my S&B Flashdot #9

I read this thread last night and started to reply..

Well, I woke up at 5:30 this morning and went outside on the back deck to look at the field behind my house.  It was a dark night and no moon.  I couldn't see anything in the field other than the shape of some trees.  I grabbed the Meopta and set it at 6x and started to glass.
Lo and behold there were some deer in the field about 75 yards out.

A few moments later I could detect horns on a young buck.

No scope, deer invisible.

I grabbed the Accupoint and could make out the deer but the glass was better on the Meopta.

I then switched between two sets of binos:
Nikon Monarch 8.5x56 that I have had for a few years that have enable me to see at night when top end scopes could not.

I also have a set of Meopta HD 10x42s in for review.

Either of which would allow me to see well enough pre dawn hours to ID deer but not count horns.
The view through the Meopta scope was about the same.

I call it a wash between all 3, both binos and the Meopta scope.

I check again about 6:30, 40 minutes before official sunrise.
Deer were gone, but I could clearly see distinction on branches on trees.

Again, about even between all.

I am very impressed with both the scope and the binos.
For a set of 42mm binos they had outstanding low light capability.

With some light, they are a bit sharper than the bigger Monarchs.

I hunted with the 10x42 HDs a few weeks ago knowing that they would not be the limiting factor for me to hunt pre dawn or post sundown as I had already tested against the Monarchs.

They would also enable you to clearly see in very low light and your scope would not be better than your binos for low light.

I should have another Kahles scope arriving this week and will take all of this stuff out hunting.

There is also a range near our hunting cabin and I plan to do some back to back testing with some of the other guys on the lease at night and get their feedback.



Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/04/2012 at 08:25
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My wife bought me a Hensoldt 6-24x72 ... lowlight...shmoelight...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/04/2012 at 08:30
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you suck :)
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/04/2012 at 11:49
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Dude... can I help it if I have the greatest wife on earth? 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/04/2012 at 13:13
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Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

My wife bought me a Hensoldt 6-24x72 ... lowlight...shmoelight...

What are you going to mount it on?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SH67N0JD3WY Reloader

Stan 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/05/2012 at 06:17
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Originally Minox was a division of Leica, now they are their own company.


I would look for these binos for your use.

Zeiss Victory 8x56 (original pre FL) can be found used under $1500
Zeiss Victory FL used or demo
Minox German HG 8x56
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/13/2012 at 22:08
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A couple of years ago I too found myself watching bucks walk away in low light because I couldn't see them well enough with the scopes and binos I had at the time to confidently make the shots. Thanks to the good advice obtained on this forum, I'm now equipped with 8 X 56 Meopta Meostar B1 binoculars and a Meopta Meostar 3 X 12 X 56MM illuminated German #4, second focal plane scope. Now fewer bucks live to tell the story as this combination has enabled me to see and shoot later than before. At the same time, I was able to stay within my target ceiling price of $1000.00 each. As others have pointed out, certainly there are better units out there than these, but they normally come at heftier prices and offer only small improvements. I likewise have a set of Minox 8 X 56 BL BR binoculars. To my aging eyes, the Meostar B1 is a better fit to my situation.
 
Outrider
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/14/2012 at 07:41
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I hunted this past weekend with a Meopta Meostar 3-12x56 German#4 RD, FFP.
I also had Meopta 10x42 HD binos with me.

I am very, very impressed with both of them.
I watched deer past legal hunting times on a dark night twice with both optics.

It was a very good match with the two.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/14/2012 at 09:39
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Originally posted by Bird Watcher Bird Watcher wrote:

Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

My wife bought me a Hensoldt 6-24x72 ... lowlight...shmoelight...

What are you going to mount it on?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SH67N0JD3WY Reloader

Stan 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/15/2012 at 06:16
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Originally posted by Kickboxer Kickboxer wrote:

Dude... can I help it if I have the greatest wife on earth? 


Does she have a sister ?????

Peddler CoolCoolCoolCoolCool
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